Throughout the summer months in Williston and the surrounding communities, a bright green trailer can often be seen, usually accompanied by a line of eager patrons.
In parks, at company picnics or community events, Jer Bears Sno Shack has become a common staple over the years - a business run by familiar faces with a desire to give back to the communities they serve.
Tami and Jerys Enget started their business six years ago out of an enjoyment of snow cones from Mo’s Snow Shack in Bismarck. A few YouTube searches later, they bought a trailer and the business was born.
“(Jerys) came to me one day and said, ‘I ordered the shack!’ Being that Williston didn’t have anything like it at the time,” Tami said. “And it all snowballed from there.”
During the first year, the Enget’s ran the business as a family with their children Lexie Clark, Keyanna and Rhys Enget. After that initial year, the shack branched out for employees.
“We wanted to hire kids to give them a summer job,” Tami said. “These kids have been back basically every single year.”
This summer, Jer Bears Sno Shack has a group of seven tight-knit employees who have become like family to the Engets and have been working together for years.
“We are all close friends,” said Caleb Prout, an employee of six years. “It’s nice to work with our friends group.”
Prout is joined by Demi Peterson and Addyson Johnson, both fifth-year employees. Marissa Branham is in her fourth summer and Leif Larsen, Kolden Kringen and Emma Senderhauf are going on two years.
“I enjoy getting to interact with the community,” Peterson said. “We go to a lot of different events and get to reach out to a lot of people. We also go to a lot of small towns nearby.”
This summer, Jer Bears has been to the towns of Tioga, Crosby, Ray, Epping, Wildrose, Arnegard, Sidney and Watford City as well as numerous events around the Williston area. A few favorites of the staff have been the Williston Relay for Life, Bethel Nursing Home and Summer Nights on Main.
“At Bethel home, it’s nice to see the residents out,” Larsen said. “They are always excited to get their favorite flavors and whatnot. Sometimes they come back for two.”
Whether it’s the Tioga pool, Ray Grain Palace or the Epping Buffalo Trails, Jer Bears Sno Shack is giving something back to the community in which they were invited. Over the summer they have been “shaving up” to contribute to the Williston Water World project. A percentage of proceeds from June 1-August 31 will be going to the pool fund at the end of the season.
“Every one of these places, I like to give back to them,” Tami said. “That’s what we like to do. Of course it’s nice to make money, but our reason is to be able to give back and this is a way to be able to do that.”
The Enget’s ties to the community run deep as Jerys and Tami both graduated from Ray and have lived in Williston for almost 30 years. Besides the snow shack, Jerys works as a branch manager for Helena Chemical Company in Sidney, M.T., and has cattle and farms in the area.
To inquire about having Jer Bears Sno Shack come to an event, they can be contacted on their Facebook or Instagram page. For the remainder of the summer, the green snow cone shack can be found at the Chokecherry Festival, Summer Nights on Main, Williston Air Show, Williston Community Builder’s Back to School BBQ, Stateline Mud Races, Wilmington Church in Arnegard, Basin Kruzers events and more.